What is the right meal plan for me?

Carthage is proud to offer several meal plan options that match the diversity and lifestyle of our residential student community. First-year students are required to select either the Standard or the Premium Plans, so they can experience all of what Campus Dining has to offer without the risk of running out of meal swipes.

Sophomore, junior, and senior residential students are eligible to select from a wider variety of plans to match their lifestyle and dining needs.

Commuter students are eligible to purchase meal block plans at any time during the semester and can purchase meal blocks as needed throughout the academic year.

Residential graduate students do not have meal plans included in their housing fees. If you are interested in enrolling in a residential meal plan, please contact the Campus Dining team at dining@carthage.edu to learn more about the available options.


Can residential students opt out of a meal plan?

All residential students are required to purchase a meal plan.


What if I want to change my meal plan?

Students select their meal plans during fall registration for the entire academic year. Students can switch their meal plans during the second week of the fall and spring semesters. Meal plan switches are not allowed outside of the designated time frames. Students wanting to switch plans should keep their eye on The Bridge (the campus e-newsletter) for directions on switching their meal plans during the designated week each semester.


Where can I see my meal swipe and Birdie Bucks balances?

The GET app is a mobile and desktop application where students can log in to see their meal swipe and Birdie Bucks balances in real-time. If students spend the entirety of the Birdie Bucks issued with their meal plans, they can use the Get APP to purchase additional Birdie Bucks.


What if I am a student with a diagnosed food allergy or medical condition that limits my ability to participate in the offered meal plans?

Carthage recognizes that we need to meet the needs of students with food allergies. Utilizing specific recipes entirely free of the top eight allergens and gluten, Inspired Eats is a concept in the Caf for students with special dietary needs. Additionally, the Caf offers gluten-free and vegetarian options upon request. Campbell Student Union restaurants also offer select allergen-free options as part of their regular menu.

Students with severe, diagnosed food allergies or medical conditions can apply for a dining accommodation to ensure they have safe food options available to them beyond the general daily offerings. You can apply for a dining accommodation by visiting the Food Allergy & Dining Accommodation webpage.


Can my parent or guardian add additional Birdie Bucks on my behalf?

Parents, guardians, or other relatives can add additional Birdie Bucks on behalf of their student at any time with the GET app.

  • On a desktop computer or tablet, visit get.cbord.com/carthage to make a deposit.
  • Click the link at the bottom of the page titled “Deposit into a Student’s Account.”
  • Enter your student’s ID number.
  • Complete the form to pay with a credit or debit card.

Your student will receive an email notification that the funds have been added to their Birdie Bucks balance. Unused Birdie Bucks will expire at the end of the academic year. Unused Birdie Bucks added using the GET App carry over from term to term, year to year, as long as the cardholder is an active student or employee at Carthage.


How can a commuter student buy an additional meal block after general registration?

Commuter students will have the opportunity to purchase a Meal Block Plan during fall registration. If a commuter student neglected to purchase a plan during registration or needs to buy an additional meal block, they can visit Student Financial Services on the 4th floor of Lentz Hall. Your meals will be available in one business day.


Why can’t I use a Meal Exchange at Starbucks?

As a franchised partner, Starbucks is unable to accept Meal Exchanges. Students can use Birdie Bucks, cash, credit, or debit to purchase food and beverage items.


Why are all residential students enrolled in an on-campus J-Term course switched to the Standard Plan?

J-Term is a four-week session that occurs outside the 30-week academic year. During this period, the campus has a smaller residential student population and campus dining locations operate on adjusted hours. During J-Term, Carthage is happy to provide two Meal Swipes a day at no additional charge for residential students enrolled in an on-campus course. Students will resume their normal plan when the spring term begins.


Does campus dining operate during breaks?

During breaks when residential halls close (Thanksgiving, Christmas, Spring Break), Campus Dining is not operational. Students applying to stay on campus during these breaks should plan accordingly to source their meals off campus.

During shorter breaks when residential halls remain open (Fall Break, Easter Break), campus dining locations operate on adjusted hours.


I require an extended stay after the end of the Spring semester. What are my dining options?

Students majoring in education that require an extended stay in a residence hall to complete their student teaching requirements should plan accordingly to source their meals off campus after the last day of the spring term.


Do you offer meal plans for students enrolled in summer courses or for students living on campus for on-campus summer employment?

Campus Dining shuts down after the conclusion of the spring term. For this reason, no meal plans are available during the summer. The Caf is open for external summer camps. Faculty, staff, and summer students/residents are welcome to pay the door rate to eat breakfast, lunch, or dinner when in operation for camps.


What happened to Carthage Cash?

Birdie Bucks have replaced Carthage Cash. $1=1 Birdie Buck. Birdie Bucks are accepted at all on-campus dining locations and the campus bookstore. Birdie Bucks added to your Carthage ID card using the GET App will roll over each academic year until your graduation.